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AB-2342 Parole.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 06/10/2020 09:00 PM
AB2342:v96#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  June 10, 2020
Amended  IN  Assembly  June 04, 2020
Amended  IN  Assembly  May 04, 2020

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 2342


Introduced by Assembly Member McCarty

February 18, 2020


An act to amend Section 2933 of, and to add Article 1.4 (commencing with Section 3007.5) to Chapter 8 of Title 1 of Part 3 of, the Penal Code relating to parole.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 2342, as amended, McCarty. Parole.
(1) Existing law requires that specified persons who have been released on parole from state prison who were not imprisoned for a violent felony, a serious felony, or an offense requiring registration as a sex offender, and who have been on parole for a period of 6 months, be discharged from parole unless the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation recommends to the Board of Parole Hearings that the person should be retained, and the board, for good cause, determines that the person is to be retained.
Existing law additionally requires specified persons who have been released on parole from state prison who were imprisoned for a serious felony or an offense requiring registration as a sex offender, and who have been on parole continuously for one year since release from confinement, to be similarly discharged from parole. Finally, existing law requires that specified persons who have been released on parole from state prison who were imprisoned for a violent felony, and who have been released on parole for a period not exceeding 3 years and have been on parole continuously for 2 years since release from confinement, or who have been released on parole for a period not exceeding 5 years and have been on parole continuously for 3 years since release from confinement, be similarly discharged from parole.
This bill would create a program under which the length of a parolee’s period of parole could be reduced through credits earned by successfully completing specified education, training, or treatment programs, or by participating in volunteer service, while adhering to the conditions of parole. The bill would make this program inapplicable to a person who is required to register as a sex offender.
(2) Under existing law, an inmate is released to the county of their residence before incarceration or, when the interest of public safety is best served, to another location specified by the Board of Parole Hearings. Existing regulations prohibit a parolee from traveling more than 50 miles from their residence without the approval of a parole agent.
The bill would also increase the 50-mile travel restriction for a parolee who successfully participates in the parole credit program, subject to certain restrictions.
The bill would require the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation and the Board of Parole Hearings to adopt regulations to carry out this program, as specified.
This bill would, as a condition of continued state funding, prohibit any entity that receives state funds and provides services and programs in the fields of education, job training, workforce placement, health, or housing, from denying access to services or programs to a person on the basis that the person is currently or previously has been on parole or postrelease community supervision.
(3) Existing law grants certain credits against a person’s sentence that may be earned by persons who are incarcerated, as specified.
This bill would clarify that the ability to earn credits cannot be waived by the sentencing court or by the defendant as part of a plea agreement.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 2933 of the Penal Code is amended to read:

2933.
 (a) It is the intent of the Legislature that persons convicted of a crime and sentenced to the state prison under Section 1170 serve the entire sentence imposed by the court, except for a reduction in the time served in the custody of the Secretary of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation pursuant to this section and Section 2933.05.
(b) For every six months of continuous incarceration, a prisoner shall be awarded credit reductions from their term of confinement of six months. A lesser amount of credit based on this ratio shall be awarded for any lesser period of continuous incarceration. Credit should be awarded pursuant to regulations adopted by the secretary. Prisoners who are denied the opportunity to earn credits pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 2932 shall be awarded no credit reduction pursuant to this section. Under no circumstances shall any prisoner receive more than six months’ credit reduction for any six-month period under this section.
(c) Credit is a privilege, not a right. Credit must be earned and may be forfeited pursuant to the provisions of Section 2932. Except as provided in subdivision (a) of Section 2932, every eligible prisoner shall have a reasonable opportunity to participate.
(d) Under regulations adopted by the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, which shall require a period of not more than one year free of disciplinary infractions, credit which has been previously forfeited may be restored by the secretary. The regulations shall provide for separate classifications of serious disciplinary infractions as they relate to restoration of credits, the time period required before forfeited credits or a portion thereof may be restored, and the percentage of forfeited credits that may be restored for these time periods. For credits forfeited as specified in paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) of Section 2932, the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation may provide that up to 180 days of lost credit shall not be restored and up to 90 days of credit shall not be restored for a forfeiture resulting from conspiracy or attempts to commit one of those acts. No credits may be restored if they were forfeited for a serious disciplinary infraction in which the victim died or was permanently disabled. Upon application of the prisoner and following completion of the required time period free of disciplinary offenses, forfeited credits eligible for restoration under the regulations for disciplinary offenses other than serious disciplinary infractions punishable by a credit loss of more than 90 days shall be restored unless, at a hearing, it is found that the prisoner refused to accept or failed to perform in a credit qualifying assignment, or extraordinary circumstances are present that require that credits not be restored. “Extraordinary circumstances” shall be defined in the regulations adopted by the secretary. However, in any case in which credit was forfeited for a serious disciplinary infraction punishable by a credit loss of more than 90 days, restoration of credit shall be at the discretion of the secretary.
The prisoner may appeal the finding through the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s review procedure, which shall include a review by an individual independent of the institution who has supervisorial authority over the institution.
(e) The provisions of subdivision (d) shall also apply in cases of credit forfeited under Section 2931 for offenses and serious disciplinary infractions occurring on or after January 1, 1983.
(f) The ability to earn credits pursuant to this section shall not be waived by a sentencing court or by a defendant as part of a plea agreement.

SEC. 2.

 Article 1.4 (commencing with Section 3007.5) is added to Chapter 8 of Title 1 of Part 3 of the Penal Code, to read:
Article  1.4. Parole Reintegration Credits

3007.5.
 (a) A Except as provided in subdivision (k), a person on parole serving a determinate period of parole is entitled to earn reintegration credits to reduce the term of that parole.
(b) A person on parole subject to lifetime parole may earn reintegration credits to advance the date of the parolee’s discharge review.
(c) Reintegration credits shall be earned at the following rates for completing the following programs or activities while on parole:
(1) (A) For the completion of an accredited academic program or course, as follows:
(i) For a general equivalency high school diploma, 12 months of credit.
(ii) For an associate degree, 12 months of credit.
(iii) For a bachelor’s degree, 12 months of credit.
(iv) For the completion of any quarter, trimester, or semester-long course taken towards an academic degree for which a passing grade was received and for which credit was not awarded for the completion of a degree, six weeks of credit.
(B) For purposes of this paragraph, “accredited” means that the program or course is accredited by an accrediting agency recognized by the United States Department of Education or the State of California.
(2) For the completion of a certified career or technical education or training program or certificate, six months of credit. For purposes of this paragraph, “certified” means that the career or technical education or training program or certificate is offered by an institution that is approved, certified, or sponsored by a government agency or state-recognized professional licensing or certification body that licenses or certifies persons in a particular profession, occupation, trade, or career field.
(3) For the completion of a cognitive behavioral treatment program, two months of credit.
(4) For the completion of a substance abuse treatment program or residential treatment program that is not ordered by a court, three months of credit.
(5) For the completion of a minimum of 12 voluntary service hours per month, 10 days of credit per month.
(6) If no other credits are earned in the 12-month period before the annual review, a person on parole may earn 15 days of credit per month for remaining free of any new arrests or parole violations.
(d) Reintegration credits may be awarded pursuant to this section for academic achievements completed while on parole in cases in which the parolee began the academic program during the period of incarceration.
(e) Reintegration credits shall not be awarded for the completion of any counseling or treatment that the person is required to complete pursuant to a court order.
(f) Reintegration credits earned during the 12-month period before each annual review shall be awarded at the annual review. The department shall reduce the period of parole imposed on a person on parole pursuant to Section 3000 by the amount of reintegration credit awarded at the parolee’s annual review. Once awarded, earned credits shall not be revoked and may not be waived by any court, parolee, or other government agency.
(g) Any reintegration credits earned during the 12-month period before each annual review may, at the discretion of the parole agent, be revoked and not awarded only if a person on parole has had a new arrest or a parole violation during that 12-month period.
(h) A person on parole may not be awarded more than 12 months of credit earned during a 12-month period. Excess credits earned in a 12-month period before an annual review shall not be awarded in a subsequent year.
(i) In revoking earned credits, the parole agent shall utilize the Parole Violation Decision-Making Instrument described in Section 3768.3 of Title 15 of the California Code of Regulations.
(j) A person on parole shall be awarded retroactive credits pursuant to paragraph (1) or (2) of subdivision (c) for educational or training programs that were completed during the parolee’s current period of parole but before the effective date of this section, subject to the restrictions in this section.
(k) A person who is required to register as a sex offender pursuant to Section 290 is not eligible to earn reintegration credits pursuant to this article.

(k)

(l) As used in this section, “voluntary service” means any time spent volunteering for a nonprofit or government agency, including time spent visiting prisons, jails, or juvenile detention facilities. Any volunteer activity shall be approved by a parole agent and documented by a site supervisor in a manner prescribed by the department.

3007.55.
 (a) A parolee who successfully earns and is awarded any amount of reintegration credits pursuant to Section 3007.5 shall, except as prohibited by law and subject to the approval of the parole agent, have their 50-mile radius of restricted travel increased by 25 miles after each annual review during which credits are awarded.
(b) The total restricted radius of travel authorized shall not exceed 125 miles.
(c) A parolee may travel outside of their radius of restricted travel for educational or employment-related purposes except as provided in subdivision (d) and subject to the approval of their parole agent.
(d) An increase in travel area made pursuant to this section shall exclude any areas within 35 miles of a victim or witness described in subdivision (f) or (h) of Section 3003 and shall not authorize travel across state borders without a travel pass.

3007.56.
 Notwithstanding any other law, as a condition of continued state funding, an entity that receives state funds and provides services and programs in the fields of education, job training, workforce placement, health, or housing, shall not deny access to services or programs to a person on the basis that the person is currently or previously has been on parole or postrelease community supervision.

3007.58.
 The Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation and the Board of Parole Hearings shall adopt any regulations necessary to carry out this article.